KARACHI: The Customs Court granted pre-arrest bail to a suspect namely Muhammad Abbas Hashmi, proprietor of M/s Progressive Movers Clearing Agency, who is nominated in a case of attempting to smuggle 54,180 kilograms betel nuts.
On October 16, 2018, counsel for the applicant filed pre-arrest bail application and argued that his client is innocent and is falsely implicated in this case, who is ready to face trial; therefore, court may grant his bail till final disposal of this case.
After the hearing, court granted him bail against the surety of Rs500,000 and issued notices to the customs department, investigation officer for next date of hearing. The court also directed the petitioner to appear before the court on next date of hearing for confirmation.
According to the prosecution, Customs Preventive Anti-Smuggling Organization registered First Information Report (FIR) that on an actionable information that two containers arrived from Jabel Ali, UAE in the name of the above-mentioned importer are lying at Karachi International Container Terminal (KICT) stuffed with betel nuts instead of plastic film rolls declared in the respective import documents.
Investigation officer informed that on information, a team visited the said spot and found 450 gunny bags bearing marks & no: “JW” each weighing 60 kilograms containing foreign-origin betel nuts total 27,000 valuing at Rs7,236,000 and 453 gunny bags bearing marks & no: “Super. A & TATA Best” each weighing 60kg containing foreign origin betel nuts total 27180kg worth Rs7,284, 240.
He argued that during the investigation, it revealed that the above-mentioned importer is involved in mis-declaration and smuggling case, therefore, case was registered for violation of Section 2 (s) 16, 32 156 (2) and 178 of Customs Act, 1969 punishable under Clause (8) (9) (14) and 89 of Section 156 (1) ibid read with Section 3 (I) of Imports & Export Control Act, 1950 and Import Policy Order 2016.
He submitted that notices have been issued to them and efforts are underway to locate and arrest the persons involved in the crime.